• Member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus • “Environmental justice” advocate
Salud Carbajal was born in Moroleón, Mexico, on November 18, 1964, before his parents and their eight children moved to a small town in Arizona, where the father worked in the local copper mines. After the mines were closed, the family relocated to Oxnard, California, where Salud Carbajal attended middle school and high school. The young man subsequently earned a bachelor’s degree from UC-Santa Barbara, and a master’s degree in organization management from Fielding University. After completing his formal education, Carbajal served for eight years in the United States Marine Corps Reserves and was on active duty during the 1991 Gulf War.
Carbajal was the First District Supervisor of Santa Barbara County from 2004-12. In that role, says the website where he lays out his political priorities, he “advocated for health and social service safety net programs for our most vulnerable residents.” Embracing the notion that the greenhouse-gas emissions associated with human industrial activity are key contributors to potentially catastrophic climate change, Carbajal also worked to implement a Climate Action Plan designed to restrict offshore oil drilling while promoting the use of solar energy in California.
In 2016, the voters of California’s 24th Congressional District elected Carbajal to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he is a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the LBGT Equality Caucus, the Climate Solutions Caucus, the Climate and Environmental Justice Congressional Task Force, and the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.
In Congress, Carbajal continues to pursue what he describes as his “long-time” advocacy work on behalf of the environment. His first act as a House Member, in January 2017, was to sponsor the California Clean Coast Act, which banned all future offshore drilling for gas and oil in that region. Carbajal has also proposed amendments designed to push the U.S. Defense Department to conduct research on how climate change may affect military operations.
Carbajal is a strong supporter of the DREAM Act, legislation that aims to legalize and eventually naturalize a large number of so-called “Dreamers” — i.e., illegal-alien teens and young adults who first came to the United States as minors. He also supports former President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative, which began with a 2012 executive action temporarily protecting hundreds of thousands of young illegal aliens from deportation.
Carbajal opposed a January 2017 executive order by which President Donald Trump attempted to place a temporary moratorium on the issuance of visas for people seeking to travel to the United States from seven majority-Muslim nations that were known to be hotbeds of Islamic terrorism. The congressman co-sponsored the Statue of Liberty Values Act (SOLVe), which declared that Trump’s executive order “is null and void, shall have no force and effect, and may not be implemented, administered, enforced, or carried out.” By Carbajal’s telling, Trump’s order was a “really misguided, not-well-thought-out policy that’s only going to harm our national security and the safety of Americans abroad.”
In January 2017 as well, Carbajal depicted President Trump’s proposed border wall (along the U.S.-Mexico border) as “a multi-billion dollar symbol of xenophobia and hate.”
Carbajal has characterized President Trump’s positions on immigration generally as “xenophobic and misguided policies that dehumanize our immigrant populations.” When Trump in 2017 sought to phase out the aforementioned DACA program, Carbajal called the action “unconscionable and incompatible with our American values.”
Carbajal has defended California’s “sanctuary” policies, whereby illegal aliens in that state are protected by local governments that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities seeking to apprehend those illegals. In March 2018 the congressman joined a number of fellow House Democrats in signing a letter criticizing “President Trump and Attorney General [Jeff] Sessions” for having “shown a complete lack of respect for California” by authorizing “indiscriminate and aggressive [immigration] raids throughout California.” The letter claimed that California lawmakers had “passed sanctuary laws to ensure everyone, regardless of [legal] status, feels safe.”
In January 2018, Carbajal criticized the Commerce Department for its announcement that in 2020, U.S. Census forms would include, for the first time since 1950, a question about people’s citizenship status. The congressman joined a number of his CHC colleagues in signing a letter to the Secretary of Commerce, stating that the inclusion of such a question would “only serv[e] to instill fear among immigrant communities,” and would thereby “decrease participation and negatively impact the outcome and accuracy of the 2020 Census.”
In January 2017, Carbajal was among the mere 18 percent of all U.S. congressmen who voted against a House Resolution condemning United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, the latter of which stated not only that Israeli settlements in the West Bank were illegal, but also that it was unlawful for Jews to pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
In October 2017, Carbajal praised the the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). “By protecting and defending the constitutional rights of American Muslims,” he said, “CAIR supports the rights of all Americans.”
For highlights of Carbajal’s voting record in Congress, click here.
Further Reading: Carbajal.house.gov/biography/; “Supervisor Salud Carbajal Announces Run for Congress” (4-9-2015); “Carbajal’s Rocky Start in Congress–Votes in Favor of Terrorist/Against Israel” (Capoliticalreview.com, 1-17-2017); “Letter to the Honorable Donald J. Trump … Immigration Assault On California” (3-12-2018); “Letter to the Hon. Wilbur Ross … Opposing Citizenship Question in 2020 Census” (1-17-2018); “Immigration” (Carbajal.house.gov); Votesmart.org quote on border wall.